In today’s marketplace, social media is an important platform for any growing business. One cannot ignore the social media if he wishes to be in the top of the industry. Using social media for marketing can enable small business looking to further their reach to more customers. Your customers are interacting with brands through social media, therefore, having a strong social media marketing plan and presence on the web is the key to tapping into their interest. If implemented correctly, marketing with social media can bring remarkable success to your business.
What is Social Media Marketing?
Social media marketing is a form of digital marketing in which marketers use various social media sites like Facebook, Twitter to promote their brand or product and to perform better communication with customers. Social media marketing primarily covers activities involving social sharing of content, videos, and images for marketing purposes.
For businesses in any industry, the key to success is ‘knowing your audience.’ Social media makes this possible, and easier to accomplish than ever. Geo-targeting is an effective way to send your message out to a specific audience or demographic based on their location. Social networks like Facebook and Twitter have tools that allow you to communicate the right kind of content to your audience. Social media is great for creating meaningful relationships with your customers.
Social networks like Twitter allow small businesses to locate their current customers or seek out potential customers. Social media for business gives you instant access to positive or negative feedback, which provides you with valuable insights on the customer perspective. With social media monitoring audience.
Now you are going to learn how to use social media for marketing according to each platform’s unique environment. Various social media marketing sites will require different techniques, so develop a unique strategy tailored for each platform.
1. Facebook. Of course! Now I don’t need to tell you that Facebook is the number one social media platform, which most people use.
Apart from the fact that we are using it for chatting with our friends or sharing the things we love such as photos, videos, or even document files, business owners widely use it as their number one source of traffic and sales and a spot for branding. A social media network with 1.49 Billion monthly active users worldwide can be the best opportunity to blow your business worldwide. Facebook custom audiences provide many ways to increase your chance of getting your content in front of the right people. To market your business successfully on Facebook, you need to understand Facebook’s unique opportunities, and how it differs from other media.
Facebook has provided 5 most important features that will help your business to get on the top.
2. Ads Optimization
3. Scheduling Your Campaigns
4. Managing Your Budget Wisely
5. Tracking Your Results
Segmentation – How to Target Your Audience. This rule works in all forms of advertising: Try to reach people who are interested in your product. Then tell your story.
Thanks to the segmentation opportunities in Facebook marketing, you have the opportunity to reach exactly the part of the population you wish, which makes advertising much more effective.
Optimize Your Ads – Tell the Right Story. Finding your audience isn’t everything. Once you’ve tracked down your potential buyers you have to present an appealing, clickable story.
Think about it: How many ads and commercials are you bombarded with every day in magazines, newspapers, on TV and on the Web? How many of these do you think to lead to a purchase?
How to Optimize Your Facebook Ads. You can spend a lot of time changing, tweaking and testing your ads and often this is time well spent.
What performs well depends on your product and your targeted demographics – what works for one product may not work for the next – but there are some basic guidelines that are good to follow.
Scheduling Your Campaigns. A well-known Facebook marketing fact is that your ads well show different results based on day of the week you are running them. The biggest difference is normally between weekdays and weekends.
However, the time period of the day the ads are shown also has a big impact on the performance.
Not All Hours Are the Same. Depending on what kind of campaign you are running, a good Facebook marketing tip is that you investigate and test to run your ads on different days and at different times of the day to identify when they are most profitable. Scheduling your ads as part of your Facebook marketing strategy will increase your performance.
Managing Your Budget Wisely. Facebook officially tells advertisers not to optimize their ads with the max bid to set a number of clicks that you will buy per day. The official statement is that the max bid price should always be what you are really able to spend per click.
Instead, you should optimize with the daily budget per campaign.
Of course, Facebook wants you to spend as much money as possible per click, so this Facebook marketing strategy for optimization should be studied carefully before you follow it blindly.
Use Conversion Tracking to See Results of Ads Like any other kind of marketing, advertising on Facebook should be measured with ROI. That’s why you need the results from each individual ad.
Give your page a human touch. The most successful companies on Facebook are those that step out from behind their logo and let the people behind the brand represent their Facebook page. The goal is to communicate with your fans as though you were talking to your friends and let your personality come through in each post.
One of the ways to do this is to step away from your niche once in a while and show your personal side through entertaining posts and photos. Change things up a bit and share details about your experiences and everyday life.
Become a content machine. Always make sure that your content educates, entertains and empowers your fans to keep them engaged and coming back for more. The key to a successful content strategy is to consistently create new content and mix up your media often.
For example, some of your fans might respond better to video than text, while others might be drawn to the images in your posts. To make sure you’re attracting the attention of your diverse group of fans, post your content in a variety of ways.
Cultivate engagement with two-way dialogue. Imagine this: You haven’t talked to your good friend in a while, so you call her up. When she answers the phone you say, “Hi! How’ve you been?” But before your friend can answer, you hang up the phone. That would be odd, right?
Well, essentially that’s what you are doing each time you post a Facebook update and then instantly move on to a new task before waiting for a few fan responses so you can engage in a conversation. Respond to comments on posts as soon as possible to you.
Create consistent calls to action. Facebook gives brands the optimal opportunity to create genuine relationships with their prospects and customers. But it’s also a great platform for moving your fans to action. One of the best ways to move a Potential Fan to a Super Fan is to start out with simple calls to action.
To do this, start out by posting valuable content, such as interesting articles and videos related to your niche, and accompany this content with simple calls to action such as “click this” or “watch this.” The valuable content will show your fans that you’re an authority and consistently post good stuff.
Also, consider offering discounts and specials or ask your fans to sign up for your newsletter. These are all low-investment calls to action that will help you build trust and affinity over time.
Adding Call-To-Action to your Video post can be very effective. At the end of watching video user will find Call-To-Action button e.g. Watch More, Learn More, Sign Up etc. This will help you for your business from your videos on Facebook.
Encourage fan-to-fan conversations. Enhance your fans’ experience by creating a community that encourages your fans to interact with each other. One surefire way to do this is to spotlight your fans. When you create opportunities such as “fan of the week” or recognize top contributors, you are giving your fans an opportunity to get to know each other.
Are you a part of small business and don’t think to spend much money on those Facebook Ads? Here is the Facebook’s very good organic platform for you, Groups make it easier than ever to share with friends, family and teammates. Now I instead of telling you to create a group, I will tell you to join hundreds of Groups related to your business and products to reach millions of people organically. Share your post i.e. Campaign to all these groups related to your business.
For example, you are an Author or Publisher and you have now published your new Book. Create a campaign of your book. It may be an Image post, book trailer or a Facebook Offer on your page. Share this post to all of the groups you have joined related to Books and Readers.
How to find groups that have related interest? Just search for it on Facebook! Use custom search of Facebook. i.e. Search in “Groups”. There are thousands of groups in every type of interest.
Facebook is giving amazing features which can be utilized effectively for growing the sales of any business. Let’s learn how we can use them in our business.
Facebook Offers. Create an offer of your Product and let people buy your products through Facebook. You can put some discounts on your products and post an offer on Facebook. The Advantage is, your customer views the offer on Facebook and goes directly to your Product page on your website or any e-commerce website the product is listed for an offer.
You can also promote your offer on Facebook for a larger sale. It will effectively grow your product sales and also increase the online presence of your product.
While creating an offer on the page, you have to choose a very good image which can attract the audience towards your offer post. Explain about what you are offering; give an external link of the product page from where the offer can be claimed. Customer clicks on “Get Offer” and goes to the product link and purchase the product if he loved.
Facebook Events. Organizing an event? Just create one on Facebook and grow attendance.
The Facebook event allows you to invite your friends to your upcoming event. Update information about your event, where is it being held and the tickets. Post photos related to Event on the event page. Share the experience of last event held. Promote this event to the segmented audience who may be interested in your event.
Call-To-Action for Page. Facebook have added this new button to Fan Pages. With this you can create call-to-actions on the Facebook page. It includes Sign Up, Book Now, Contact Us, Use App, Play Games, Shop Now and Watch Video. You can use one of these and give it a custom link of the particular webpage e.g. your website, Shopping Store page, Videos page etc. You can also collect email database by giving the link of your Opt-in Form to “Sign-Up” button.
And the other good news is that you can view the reports of the number of clicks to this Call-to-Action button in current Week.
Contact Me: Contact Form Tab. Contact Me is the simplest way to add a beautiful new contact form as a tab right on your Facebook page, making it super easy for fans and potential customers to send you their contact information and a message.
YouTube App. Youtube Tab lets you display your latest YouTube channels videos in a tab on your Facebook pages. Broadcast yourself to a larger audience with the YouTube Tab for Facebook. This helpful app adds a tab to your Facebook page, which offers users easy access to your library of YouTube videos. With an HTML5 YouTube player complete with 720p HD playback, hashtag search, Facebook comment and Like functionality for each video, and simple thumbnail navigation, this app successfully migrates YouTube to a convenient space within your Facebook account.
It is the starting point for anyone interested in building anything for or with the Facebook platform. Build, grow and monetize cross-platform apps and games for over 1.3 billion people worldwide with developer products from Facebook.
Ads for Apps. Increase installs and engagement for your app.
Analytics for Apps. Make data-driven decisions for your customers and ads.
Anonymous Login. Enable signups by letting people try your app without sharing their information.
App Invites. Let people share apps they love directly with their friends.
App Links. An open, cross platform standard for app-to-app linking.
App Monetization. Monetize your app with ads from Facebook and Live Rail.
Audience Network. Monetize your app with Facebook Ads.
Games. Bring your games cross-platform, and reach millions of Facebook players.
Facebook Login. A convenient and cross-device way for people to sign into your app.
Messenger. Empower expression and help people discover your app.
Parse. Build powerful mobile apps faster.
Sharing. Drive awareness for your website and app content on Facebook.
Social Plug-ins. The easiest way to make your website and app more social and engaging.
2. Twitter. Conversations on Twitter are just like the face-to-face encounters you have with customers each day. So if you want to succeed with Twitter and before you run off and chase shiny butterflies and little blue birds, take a seat and digest the Twitter Marketing tips.
About the new feature first!
Twitter’s Direct Messages Service. Twitter’s recent tweaks to its direct message feature make it easier for users to reach you directly and it will help you to improve communication with customers.
With Twitter’s recent updates, you can set up your account to receive direct messages from any Twitter users, whether or not you follow those users. Previously, direct messaging was impractical for customer service because you could only send direct messages to users who followed you. This created a barrier between users seeking customer service via Twitter and businesses providing it. Unless your account and the user’s account followed each other, the conversation was stalled before it ever began.
If you want to provide the best possible customer service on social, consider enabling this feature. With it turned on, any fan, follower or curious customer can send you a direct message without you following him or her first. This streamlines communication with customers and empowers users who want to reach you directly.
Twitter’s new direct message capabilities are especially perfect for social customer service when providing support is contingent on sharing personal information.
For example, if users report issues on Twitter or have a question about which you need more information, you can invite customers to direct message you with details that they don’t feel comfortable posting publicly.
As with any new feature, there are pros and cons to using it for your business. Here’s a look at how Twitter’s Direct Messages feature can help improve customer communication, and how it could potentially harm customer relationships.
Here are a few advantages of inviting customers to direct message you, rather than direct messaging them yourself.
Your Message is less likely to fall through the Cracks. If users reach out to you via reply, they typically expect a reply in return. (Just like if you send someone an email, you expect a return email, not a phone call.)
Because users who tweet a reply may not be expecting a direct message in return, they might not notice if you send one, or they could receive so much direct message spam that they habitually ignore their Twitter inbox. To avoid this, invite the customer to direct message you.
If you respond to reply via direct message, casual observers may think you’re ignoring the customer’s issue. Even if it’s better to continue the conversation in private, creating a public record of your initial reply shows others that you respond to inquiries in a timely manner.
Make your profile Good-looking. Users should be attracted to follow you and come to know, what you are about, before following you.
Custom Background Design. When someone comes to your Twitter profile for the first time, they should see a great design that reflects your brand.
Creative and Descriptive Bio. You get a whopping 160 characters to describe yourself and what people will get when they follow you on Twitter. Make it interesting and convincing!
Profile Picture. No one will follow you if you keep the generic Twitter icon. People will think that you don’t know well about Twitter and not a lot of people want to follow a logo (unless it’s a well recognized one). What they do want to see is a person behind the profile. Social media is all about engagement, and people want to engage with other people, not just companies or bots.
Great Tweets. Last, but not least, when people are deciding to follow you, chances are they are going to do so based on your most recent tweets. If you visit your profile, you’ll see your last twenty tweets at the least. Make sure that these tweets reflect your engagement level with your audience – you should be sharing great content and responding to others MORE than you should be doing pitches and trying to make sales.
Does Twitter fit for your business? Twitter connects you with customers, prospects, journalists, employees, candidates, investors and marketing partners. It is a good communication and social networking tool engages with these types of people. So twitter will fit for overall online marketing and better communication between you and your customers. You will able to find users in various fields and you can grab any one and target your audience.
Look for Targeted Followers
Now, if you’re done with profile setup, and some great tweets, your next goal will be to gain followers. Sure, it is very simple to get just any followers, but the skill is to get targeted followers who are interested in your industry. So how do you find them? And how do you get them to follow you?
While everything shouldn’t always be about numbers, there is a certain thing to be said about someone coming to your profile and seeing that you have a good follower count. I usually like to start a new Twitter account out by finding people who have a follow back policy in place, usually implemented by an online application. Basically, you will be looking for people who have close to a 1: 1 ratio of followers and following count.
Who are you trying to connect with? Think about which people are interested in your product. Find out the people interests and note it down. And then Start. If you are just new on Twitter then find some examples about what your competitors are doing with Twitter.
You can find your business-related Twitter user by just searching by Keywords related to your business or you can use directories such as Twellow and Wefollow. These sites can help you to find Twitter users in specific industry. Follow the right people in the specific industry and see what they do. Find out what seems to get a good response and what doesn’t. Analyze and proceed to reach towards them.
Increase engagement on Twitter by having more conversations “one to one” either on your twitter page or the private messaging feature of Twitter with “Direct Messages” (We have discussed this earlier). These tactics could be activities such as answer questions people ask you on Twitter as soon as possible. Keep them is touch. Recognize people on Twitter who retweet your posts often and encourage them.
Monitoring: This is what you have to do personally, looking at the comments and feedbacks from your followers. For this, you have to manually read and reply to the feedbacks to know if it is positive or negative.
Measuring: It can be done by a measuring tool you should have with you for better results.
Twitter Counter: It will help you to get a clear overview and graph of your Twitter stats. Twitter Counter tracks statistics for over 180 million users.
So keep monitoring, engaging and testing. Be prepared for a new investigation and be creative to find out which one is better than something.
3. LinkedIn. If you think LinkedIn is just for professionals and job seekers it’s wrong. Yes, it is sure that millions of professionals use LinkedIn every day to grow their networks and their careers, but you must know that LinkedIn also can be used for growing your business. It is effective marketing digital platform for making targeted connections and generating leads, establishing partnerships and creating good online brand awareness. It is the largest business networking site in the world. Messages are more professional, Conversations are geared towards the partnerships and professional relationships. Point is, if you are not using this powerful site to market your business yet, then don’t waste your time and be serious about this.
Let’s learn how you can grow your business with LinkedIn!
Complete your profile. Your complete profile is your soul of your online business on LinkedIn. So make sure to add a complete business profile on your LinkedIn account.
The strength of LinkedIn is, if you complete your profile, it will be in the top 5 search results on Google if someone searches for you with Name and surname or as your business name. When others do a search for your name to learn about your product, service, company, or previous work experience, then you’d better have a rock solid profile or that first impression could drastically tarnish your value.
Find targeted customers. Finding targeted connections and connecting them will effectively help you for many purposes. To be found and contacted by various professionals related to your industry, to drive more traffic to your website. If you have more connections then it will be more potential leads. The more people you connect with, inspire, help, and influence, the bigger impact you will have on the world. This creates the potential for more recommendations, more referrals, and a bigger platform as a thought leader in your niche. Your growing contacts are the powerful capital for your business. LinkedIn allows you to export your contacts.
The targeting on LinkedIn is unparalleled in the realm of digital marketing. Small businesses can zero in on the exact industry, company size and job role of the people that they know typically would buy their product or service. For example, if you are selling customer support software to small businesses in the United States, you can set your advertising campaigns to only be showing to businesses [that are] under 100 employees, based in America — and within that grouping, only to executives at those companies with a customer-support title. It’s time to use LinkedIn like a live networking event and introduce yourself to others, make new friends, and start helping more people connect. Also, start accepting invitations to others who add you, as the more connections you have, the larger your expanded network grows which helps create more opportunities in the long run.
Keep in touch with customers. Find out targeted customers who may be interested in your company, products. Search them and get connected with them. Stay in touch with the people who have expressed interest, again using LinkedIn. Make daily status updates and weekly LinkedIn blog posts to keep your name in front of your network. Also you can make offers on your timeline, such as inviting people to a webinar or an event.
Tell what you are. Add an interesting story in your summary, have a video recommendation pop up in the first few seconds, or at the least tell people who you are, who you help, and how you help them so there is some direction for people when they land on your profile. The user, while looking at your profile should not get irritated. They must feel good and should add you to their connections. Imagery, colors and content on this page should be consistent with your website and any other social media profiles the business has. The page should be updated regularly, so the brand is active and appears to be a current business.
Get as many of your employees as possible to create and complete their profiles on LinkedIn. These should include appropriate photos, relevant job history that includes a description of how they help your business, and professional connections.
Post good content. Good content can be highly targeted and should accomplish two goals. First, it should teach others how to solve a problem or how to do their job better. And it then establishes you as a thought leader in that space. Each aspect naturally leads to more business, if you offer them real value. It’s basic psychology, and it gets real results to your business.
Posting directly on LinkedIn is the most powerful tool available on LinkedIn today. If a post begins to gain some momentum, LinkedIn will put a spotlight behind it in one of their categories, and it can get tens of thousands of readers (or more). This is a great way to improve your visibility while reaching readers in a way that would not have been possible on your own website/ blog or even posting an article link on LinkedIn.
Join Groups. Dear small business owners, I especially recommend you to join LinkedIn groups that are relevant to your target demographic. It doesn’t matter what industry or business you are in, this the part of LinkedIn you should be focusing the most. There are benefits to both joining and being a part of niche-related groups, and also being the owner of them. This is the platform to listen what your audience are talking about and interact with customers or offer your advice. More importantly, you can message the members of groups you are in, even if you aren’t connected.
Also create your own LinkedIn group to start with. After you have your LinkedIn group set up, go out and join as many groups where your prospects are hanging out. The next step is to pick one of those new groups you’ve joined and started working the Members page to find prospects. Once you’re inside the group and approved as a member, click on Members, then filter the list of members further by searching for certain job titles or something else to winnow down the list to your ideal prospects, and then invite them to join your group.
Once these invitees join your LinkedIn group, you have all your proverbial fish in the same barrel all your best prospects in one place! You can control this LinkedIn group so that no competitors get in, and you can share great/valuable content within the group that your prospects will love. You also get to demonstrate your expertise for them while avoiding overt sales pitches or spam. Plus, you also have a built-in email list, a focus group of your core prospects/clients and so on. This is a great tactic to build your brand and generate leads to boost your small business.
Add Apps to your profile. It’s good thing that LinkedIn has rolled out a number of applications to help you promote your business or your personal work better. It doesn’t matter what industry you are in, there is an application for everyone that can help you get your message across better, and improve the overall experience of your LinkedIn profile. Go to the applications section on your profile to see which ones you could start using today, and make the most out of the new ones that come out in the future.
Custom URL Everyone should claim their custom URL to ensure it includes their name (e.g. https://www.linkedin.com/in/raina42098). This is especially important for people who have a lot of contact with potential clients — especially for those who [are in] professional services and the B2B sector — because when meeting with someone they have not yet met, many people will search Google for the name of the person with whom they’re meeting in order to learn more about them. Claiming your custom URL makes it more likely your LinkedIn profile will rank in the top of those search results.
Understand that LinkedIn is a social network for professionals to connect with other professionals. A business owner can, and should, connect with prospects, strategic partners, referral partners and other business owners. And once those connections are made, the business owner can decide how to nurture specific connections to grow the relationship.
4. Google+. Google Plus has more users than you think. Google Plus is a social network you can’t ignore. Sure, it isn’t as popular as Facebook or Twitter, but it can help impact your search engine rankings in a positive way. You can build a real follower base on Google Plus. On average, top brands have collected 90% as many fans on Plus as on Twitter. Google Plus generates much more brand engagement than you think.
130,000,000 – Estimated Unique Monthly Visitors 55% of all users logging into Google+ daily 36% Growth rate per Year All Gmail users have Google+ account.
Perfect Profile. Let people recognize you just by looking at your profile picture and cover. Your profile should reflect your brand identity. Add company logo as a profile picture and if it’s your personal profile add your good close-up photo. Add a cover photo that showcase your brand and products.
“About” should be searchable on Google+. Tell what you are about and what do you do. You have to show people what they should listen to you.
Manage People and Circles. Find targeted people who have similar interest and add them to your circles. Create a circle of people who are regularly engaging with you. Then build the relationship between them and get engaged.
Search with your interest with hashtags and connect with new people related to your industry. E.g. Search #Marketing. You will find pages, people and communities who have an interest in digital marketing. Add them to your circles. Follow pages. Join communities. You can create a different circle named ‘marketing’ so that it will be easy to contact them and share things with them in future.
Keep posting a good content. Share good content from other users. Don’t forget to select ‘public’ option while posting, to maximize your post engagement on g+. Sharing with public means anyone can see your post.
In your ‘Home’ stream you can see what your circles are sharing with you. However, you decide what is shown in the all tab and you can choose a different setting for each of your circles. You can add anyone to the circle even if they are not your friends. There limit of 5000 people for a total number of profiles that can be included across all your circles. So, you can create a community for your company to engage more customers with you.
Join communities. Find and engage in industry-related communities. g + communities are the great way to meet new people, learn and expand your brand reach. You can tell your own story or listen to others and inspire.
Once you have identified communities relevant to your brand join them and participate in them regularly. Share valuable content and actively ask and answer questions. Don’t only share your own stuff, like product ads or something that people find as spam.
Don’t only post links and images. Describe why you sharing them. How you content will help them. Don’t share the same post in multiple communities. Sharing exactly the same post with multiple communities could be seen as spam.
Use hangouts for product demonstrations or industry debates, the face-to-face time puts a personality behind your Google+ profile.
Google+ My business Pages. If you are acting as a business then you will probably want to set up a ‘Google+ Page’.
Google My Business is the fast and easy way for businesses, products, brands, artists, and organizations to manage their online presence with Google. Using the Google My Business dashboard, you’ll now be able to:
1. Maintain up-to-date business information on Google
2. Build loyal customers using a Google + page. Followers of the page for your business can show appreciation and give feedback with posts and reviews, and use the + 1 button to endorse products and services on Google +, Google Search, Maps or on ads.
3. Track engagement with insights for Google+ pages and posts
4. See information on your related Google Analytics account and YouTube channels
5. Seamlessly create and track performance of AdWords Express campaigns
Businesses with a physical location or servicing local geographies get additional benefits. Once you verify your business on Google My Business, you’ll be able to:
1. Help get your business found on Google. Google can use the business information you provide in local search results.
2. Read and respond to reviews from your customers
3. Get insights on how customers searched for your business, and where they’re coming from
Share Smart Content
1. Give your posts a title and make it BOLD by enclosing it with asterisks (*).e.g. “I am *Vinay*.” will appear as, “I am Vinay.”
2. Use underscore (_) at the beginning and at the end of the sentence to make it italicized.
3. Google+ automatically adds related hashtags for you based on your content of the post. However you can also add your own hashtags.
4. If you want to grab someone’s attention when you post in Google+, try mentioning them using ‘+’ or ‘@’ signs.
5. Google+ is the highly visual platform, so include photos, GIFs and videos
6. Take a few sentences to explain what you are sharing. Tell people what it’s about.
7. Asking a question opens dialogue, and encourages a response. It is one of the simplest, most straightforward methods to encourage conversations.
8. Monitor your comments too quickly answer questions or concerns.
9. To be active on G+ look to create a post at least a few times a day.
10. Don’t only post about promotional. Post some inspirational quotes, jokes, facts, experiences, etc. Only 30% of content should be promotional. 70% of your posts should be entertaining and educating.
11. Share content from your industry regularly and keep in touch with your targeted customers. Post some videos, pictures.
The more you share on Google+ profile or business pages, the more you will get your name out there. And also + others posts and share if you liked ones.
Whether you like or hate Google Plus, you have no choice but to leverage it. Why? Because Google owns it!
As the most popular site in the world, Google can really help boost your revenue. Having the top rankings can mean the difference between being in business and being out of business.
Because the search giant owns this social network, you’re better off using it due to the fact that it can impact how well your site does in the organic listings.
5. Pinterest. Seventy million people are, with a large number of those being bloggers, companies, brands, and businesses. The opportunities to expand your reach and meet your audience are many on Pinterest, and they come in many unique ways. Though falling under the umbrella of social media marketing, Pinterest has its own special notes and best practices that help make it an extremely fun, exciting place to test, iterate, and add value to those on the network.
Brand your account. Choose a user name that aligns with your brand. Upload your logo as your profile picture and fill out your profile so that users know it’s the brand account. (Pinterest doesn’t have ‘official’ or ‘verified’ accounts yet, so building out your brand profile will help establish your page as the ‘official’ page.)
Create your initial pinboards. Think of the different types of collections that are relevant to your business and set up initial pinboards. Look at the featured accounts on Pinterest for ideas on how to set up your first set of boards. Use appealing board names (e.g. Dream Kitchens) that entice users and appeal to the inspirational nature of the network. You can start with just a few boards and expand your engagement on Pinterest grows.
Seed your initial pinboards. Seed your initial boards with items and images from your websites and brands. These products will help establish what your brand presence is all about when users first visit your boards. Use images and products that are visually appealing and diverse.
Begin curating. Jump into the Pinterest stream, browsing the categories relevant to your business and the ‘everything’ stream. Repin items relevant to your brand into your existing (or new) pinboards. Look for items that have already been repinned or items that have high visual appeal. Even if they aren’t your products, having items repinned will increase awareness of your account and generate followers and views for subsequent shares.
Connect with Pinterest users. While you’re curating be sure to follow users who share interesting and relevant content and comment on their pins where appropriate. This will help build awareness of your brand online and generate reciprocal follows.
Be consistent. Try to repin and add new content to your boards daily. The Pinterest stream moves quickly, so focused bursts will only be seen by a fraction of the people using the service. Dripping out content over time, on a more frequent basis, will result in greater visibility.
Cross-promote your accounts. Jump-start your Pinterest following by announcing and sharing your new account with your followers on other social media channels like Facebook and Twitter, and via email.
People share inspirational items. People look ahead to what they dream about and share their passions. As a user of the site, you should jump into this well of positivity with fun and an uplifting spirit. Share things that resonate with the largely related audience and appeal to those aspirational longings.
Get your employees involved. There’s a good chance your employees are already on Pinterest. Ask them to contribute to your pinboards and ask their feedback on how to make your brand account one worth following. By getting them involved they’ll help repin and share your content with their followers, as well as surface great content for you to repin and share.
Engaging with the Pinterest Community
Share Interesting Content. Sharing interesting content is the fastest way to gain an audience and build traffic from Pinterest. As a brand it’s tempting to see Pinterest as a new place to advertise your entire product line. Many brands make this mistake. They launch a Pinterest presence, pin all of their products into pinboards and then cease activity. This shows a lack of understanding of the dynamics and audience of the site. The site discourages excessive self-promotion. It’s important that brands participate in the community by repinning other user’s items. This creates awareness and good will for your brand on Pinterest, building your following.
Curating Interesting Pinboards. Unlike Facebook, Google+ and Twitter, Pinterest lacks ‘brand’ pages. Brands use standard accounts and therefore are represented as a brand only by their user name, logo and the boards they curate. Users who find a brand via a pinned item will often review the brand’s boards for interesting collections before making a determination to follow the brand. Pinboards should be sorted by category, theme or interest and contain a mix of brand products and curated products. Segregating brand products into separate boards runs the risk of followers abandoning those boards while following the curated ones.
Avoiding Excessive Self-Promotion. Brands must share their own content in order to reap the traffic benefits of Pinterest. There are no hard and fast rules around the optimum mix of brand content vs. repinned content, but the general rule of thumb is to find some balance in what is shared.
Finding and Following Users. In order to build following users must be aware of the brand presence on Pinterest. The easiest way to do this is to repin, like or comment on other user’s items. Repins, likes and follows generate email notifications to users, alerting them to your activity. This builds goodwill and also creates awareness of your brand account on Pinterest.
Advanced Pinterest Marketing Tactics
Run a Pinterest Contest. Come up with a ‘Pin It to Win It’ contest. Challenge Pinterest users to create interesting pinboards or share content from your site on Pinterest and award prizes for the best boards. Contests are a great way to generate a large amount of your content in the Pinterest feed along with plenty of links back to your site and product pages.
Use Guest Curators. Ask a Pinterest power user to play guest curator for a week. By reaching out to Pinterest users with large followings already, you can leverage their popularity by creating awareness for your account.
Create Fan-curated Boards. You can make any pinboard open to contributors. Invite your brand fans and followers to curate some of your boards for you. This is a great way to invite brand-loyalists to participate, creating a deeper connection between you and the customers who already care the most about you.
Add a Pin It button to your website. If you have a product-oriented website with lots of great visuals, you can add Pinterest’s ‘Pin It’ button to your website. It works just like a Facebook Like button and allows users to quickly share your content across the network by adding it from your site to one of their pinboards.
Optimize Your Pin Copy. Pinterest collections are starting to surface in Google and Bing organic search results. Each Pin has up to 500 characters of copy that can accompany it. Be intentional about your Pin copy and optimize it for relevant keywords to gain extra organic rankings on important words for your business.
Pinterest is a fast-growing opportunity in the social marketing space. If your brand is aligned with the type of content that Pinterest users like to share it can be a powerful driver for brand awareness and referral traffic back to your websites. But right now, the site has captured the imagination of the women everywhere, and opportunistic brands are using it as a fresh, new opportunity to talk to the most important segment of the consumer market. Ok then! Keep Pinning!
6. Tumblr. Tumblr is arguably the most difficult social media platform to use as a business, but it’s also one of the most interesting networks. Tumblr allows several different post formats, including text posts, chat posts, quote posts, audio posts, photo posts and video posts, so you’re not limited as to what kind of content you can share. As with Twitter, reblogging (reposting other users’ content) is very quick and easy, so if a user with a lot of followers, shares your content, it’s possible to go viral fairly quickly. However, what sets Tumblr apart more than anything is its audience, which is less like a pool of users and more like one big tight-knit community full of smaller sub-communities.
Tumblr currently hosts more than 200 million blogs, publishing 80 million posts per day. And the majority of these blogs are run by young people (half of Tumblr’s visitor base is under the age of 30). But this means that businesses that don’t cater to young people’s interests or aren’t relatable to young people in some way are not poised for success on the network. The good news is, there’s a subcommunity or fandom for almost every niche and interest you can think of, so a successful marketing campaign is possible if you use Tumblr correctly.
Why Tumblr? Do you want to build awareness to your brand? Another blog? Do you want to create revenue? Do you want to educate customers? Or improve customer service relations? Your answers will help you create a sustainably successful Tumblr blog. Tumblr is ranked #1 in social sentiment towards brands.
Create a Catchy Tumblr Name. Create a great Tumblr presence by coming up with a great name. And in the ecosphere of Tumblr, where users are younger and more fickle, a great name can make or break your marketing efforts.
But what makes a great Tumblr name? Something that is catchy, memorable and, if possible, short. It’s also perfectly okay to use your brand name in order to maintain consistency with your brand. It may not be a bad idea to keep the brand consistency because convincing your loyal followers to migrate to a new social media website will be easier to do if they recognize your name. Think and Go ahead!
Create a Customer-Friendly Tumblr Blog. One of the worst mistakes that you can make when using Tumblr is to treat it like a marketing dumping ground. You will never create a following using that strategy.
Some social media sites make for good business networking… LinkedIn or Twitter for example. But Tumblr is really kind of geared to the creative side of business. Tumblr users tend to be suspicious of any kind of marketing ploy… so if you come off heavy-handed, then you will not grow.
Be really good about your content. Plan about the posts on the Tumblr to promote your business.
Don’t only post about promotional things. Post about your thoughts, educating blogs, some funny memories in your company about your employees or co-workers. Post various photos, videos that will inspire your audience and keep your audience engaged on your Tumblr network.
Navigation. Tumblr blogs tend to be simple and clean, so navigation is pretty easy. Users can see in an instant what a Tumblr is all about. This keeps people focused on your single stream of content, but one thing people can’t do is crawl through your content. Neither does it highlight your best content. One way to overcome this set back is to create pages devoted to categories like must see, most reblogged or most popular. You can also create category pages geared to media like audio or video.
The goal is to keep people on your Tumblr blog and reduce your bounce rate… and creating categories will help people navigate your site by making it stickier.
Focus On a Very-Tight Niche. Humor seems to work really well on Tumblr, especially if you can share content that is narrow. But you don’t have to be funny necessarily to use Tumblr. You can narrow it down on your Tumblr blog to areas in your industry, such as the following:
SEO Share graphs, charts and infographics on your Tumblr that you come across during your research… this way you are appealing to the visual rather than text (leave a textual focus for your normal blog).
Author/Publisher. Post blurbs of your new books, Book Trailers. Share something related to your book content. Tell people why they should purchase your books. Share reviews of books, author interviews.
Technology. Share images and short reviews on a specific piece of electronic equipment – whether it’s something new like the iPad or even an antique server, it’s worth sharing.
Social Media. Share pictures and short comments on tools you find that will help people effectively use social media.
How you use Tumblr is really only limited by your imagination. The key is to keep it creative and tightly-focused.
Creating Effective Tumblr Posts. Posting on Tumblr is pretty easy. It’s all about curating great content and then sharing it. But don’t make the mistake so many marketers’ make and just post content for the purpose of posting content.
One trick that helps to create great content for Tumblr is to understand what are the common concerns and questions of your audience… and then deliver that kind of content.
It’s a really bad strategy to expect people to adopt a new platform in order to engage with you. And while there are millions of people on Tumblr, I would recommend making your account accessible to everyone. If you don’t tweak your account to allow non-Tumblr people to interact with you, then they will not be able to get updates, leave feedback or navigate your content.
To native users, it’s normal within Tumblr to do things like browsing their dashboard, follow and reblog. But to outsiders, this is a strange rule they don’t understand. You, as a marketer, have to help as many people as possible easily connect with your Tumblr.
Leaving feedback. Comments are a big part of social interaction on blogs, but on Tumblr the natural thing to do is “Like” or reblog… then you can leave a comment. As you can see, that leaves out anybody who doesn’t have a Tumblr account and just wants to leave a comment. To take care of that problem, then you will need to install Disqus on Tumblr. Disqus gives you a really open commenting feature so that anyone can leave a comment.
There are some really neat features about Disqus that make it worth the install:
Broadcast followers. Tumblr Search is a great way to find great content. As the title tag proclaims… it will make boredom go away. Can you use Tumblr Search to increase your followers? It’s actually pretty easy to do since it only requires two steps from you: when to post and using the right tags.
Unlike Google search, Tumblr search relies on tags and not your typical search engine optimization tricks like keywords. You need to figure out how to use tags correctly if you want to be the one who shows up in those searches.
Tagging. Tags are used to explain and categorize your content… giving you the ability to categorize and searchers a way to find your content. Tags are easy to implement in your posts. Just create some tags in the box that sits in the right sidebar. Of course you have to choose tags that are relevant to the content of your post. And be careful, Tumblr will view the excessive use of tags as spam and can even ban your blog.
Tumblr doesn’t rank well on search engines like typical blogging platforms. But there are a few tactics you can employ that will actually make your content search engine friendly.
Optimize page titles. Yes, Tumblr will let you tweak your page titles using HTML. That may sound like more than you can handle, but it’s really pretty easy. All you have to do is input the name of the post, a short summary and the name of the Tumblr in the < title > tag of the actual post.
Create custom post URLs. Tumblr has the option in your dashboard to create custom URL for your posts, whether it’s a photo, chat, link, video, quote or copy. This option is on the right hand side of your dashboard in the posting section. Spaces will be automatically changed to hyphens. While this feature alone won’t necessarily send you screaming to the top of listings, it will give you a leg up. As each of these SEO tips is implemented… one SEO trick alone won’t change things… but you will see the accumulated effect!
Add tags. I went into great detail about this in the section titled “How to get more followers by dominating Tumblr Search”, but need to mention it again in case you have not read this entire article and have skipped down to this section. Read it for more information.
Optimize photos with the alt attribute. You can enhance the SEO value of your photos… and no, I’m not talking about adding tags. What I’m talking about is the same thing when it comes to using the alt attribute on normal websites. Content rules when it comes to SEO-friendly photos, so name the files and fill out the alt attribute with keywords.
Tumblr is really great for sharing short, punchy – cool content that doesn’t demand too much from the user. Unfortunately this makes creating viral content really hard. Tumblr can play in your brand’s successful content marketing strategy. Use it wisely, use it often, and use it well.
7. Instagram. Among new social media marketing opportunities, Instagram’s impressive growth is turning heads. Many brands are now heavily using the mobile app to boost their visual marketing strategy. The rise of management platforms that help measure Instagram activity is giving additional fuel to this already impressive adoption rate, and best practices in Instagram monitoring and analytics are arising.
Because The Visual Marketing rocks! Visual marketing is often cited as the main trend. Because images appeal to emotions, they talk more than words; they strike a chord with consumers, and resonate across cultures. On Social Networks in particular, photos drive more engagement than any other kind of post. On Facebook, photo posts increase the interaction rate by 39% compared to average.
With 90 Million monthly active users, the Instagram community is thriving and eager to share beautiful photos. Companies are aware of this new opportunity, and many big names have already jumped on board. By launching web profiles and online feeds, Instagram has recently made itself even more attractive to marketers. The shared photos are now easier to find, and benefit from an improved life cycle.
Sharing beautiful photos to develop a brand name and reputation is just the start of a successful visual marketing strategy on Instagram.
Since Facebook’s acquisition of the channel in 2012, Instagram growth has exploded, with 300 million active users, 30 billion photos shared, and an average of 70 million photos posted per day.
Here are some good habits while using Instagram for your business:
Use Hashtags. By using hashtags, businesses can drive traffic to their Instagram profile, where they can use the profile link to drive traffic to their website or an introductory offer.
Find Your Influencers. Find users relevant to your industry. Follow them. Tag them to your photos, posts. Identify your customers who are already on Instagram. This is the unique way of building your Instagram following and maximizing engagement. From there, use Instagram’s “follow all contacts” feature, which will search for any of your contacts on Instagram and then you can select to follow them.
Integrate Instagram Content with Email Instagram and email marketing can be a really powerful combination.
If you embed live Instagram content around a brand hashtag, you can streamline that process by offering photos taken by customers to people who are considering a product or service. This makes the email more engaging and the product more appealing.
Feature the latest Instagram photos from its properties to give new guests a glimpse into what they can do during their stay.
Instagram is the king of engagement. Through the power of hashtags, influencers, and more, it’s possible to turn Instagram into a powerful funnel for both lead generation and customer engagement. The best part is that all you need to get started is your phone and a great picture. Thankfully services are popping up that help with Instagram measurement, which will become more and more important and useful as the photo app evolves to become a fully fledged social media marketing platform. Currently tools can measure likes and hashtags along with reach and volume of photos. Inevitably the ability to measure conversations taking place on Instagram is likely to be incorporated into measurement tools, giving a richer picture of the effectiveness of Instagram as part of the marketing strategy.
Well done. We have finished with this now. The Social Media! But you are not stopping! You are just starting with all these social platforms. You may think to ask a question! Do I require joining all these sites? A simple answer to your question is YES! Every Social Network has some different features which can help you to increase the online presence of your brand. All networks are important to your business. So according to your business type, you just have to plan a good strategy and observe which one is more useful.
Sharing content with thousands of followers at once isn’t the only benefit of social media for business. Small businesses all over the world have been discovering the ways social media can contribute to success and growth in all areas of their companies. Social media is an easy way to generate leads. Social media for business has allowed companies to increase brand awareness and reach of their brand at little to no cost. The costs associated with these strategies are a lot higher with traditional advertising methods. Recently, marketing departments across companies started hiring community managers to increase brand awareness and reach through social media. Community managers foster relationships with online audiences in different regions.
So what are you waiting for? Just start with it! Best of Luck!